Trending
MOST READ
Beaches Be Trippin\': Five Texas Coast Spots Worth the Drive

Beaches Be Trippin': Five Texas Coast Spots Worth the Drive

Arts & Culture: Let’s face it, most of us Lone Stars view the Texas coast as a poor man’s Waikiki. Hell, maybe just a poor man’s Panama Beach — only to be used... By Callie Enlow 7/10/2013
Gabriel Iglesias’ ‘The Fluffy Movie’ Bids Aloha to the Famous Nickname

Gabriel Iglesias’ ‘The Fluffy Movie’ Bids Aloha to the Famous Nickname

Screens: Although his nickname “Fluffy” has defined him for years, stand-up comedian Gabriel Iglesias isn’t worried about losing... By Kiko Martínez 7/23/2014
Best Desserts

Best Desserts

Best of SA 2013: 4/24/2013
Lunchtime Snob: Pho Vy

Lunchtime Snob: Pho Vy

Food & Drink: There’s something extraordinarily balanced about a big bowl of pho. Its warm, steamy broth base, tender noodles and savory smell... By Janae Rice 7/23/2014
7 Public Art Projects Worth Searching For

7 Public Art Projects Worth Searching For

Arts & Culture: You’re likely familiar with the high-profile works of public art on view around downtown San Antonio: the gigantic, red swoop of... By Sarah Fisch 7/23/2014
Calendar

Search hundreds of restaurants in our database.

Search hundreds of clubs in our database.

Follow us on Instagram @sacurrent

Print Email

Arts & Culture

"Pace Gems:" Flawless pieces, gorgeous setting lost in a jumble

Photo: Courtesy Photo, License: N/A

Courtesy Photo

Andrea Bowers, 'Memorial to Arcadia Woodlands Clear-Cut'

Photo: N/A, License: N/A

Courtesy Photo

Martha Rosler, 'Nature Girls (Jumping Janes)'


Dominating the interior of SPACE, the new gallery in the sleek, bunker-like structure that used to house the unassuming offices of the Linda Pace Foundation, Andrea Bowers’ Memorial to Arcadia Woodlands Clear-Cut (2013), hangs like an outsized peduncle. Memorial, the LPF Permanent Collection’s most recent acquisition, is structurally chandelier-like—it’s circular in form, beveled and hangs from the ceiling—but assaultive, resolutely inelegant and ungainly. Its thousands of green paracords look like climbing ropes, because that’s exactly what they are; the metal hooks and ropes are the kind used to shimmy up rocks or trees. Affixed to these ropes, dangling listlessly, is a brown army of cedar wood scraps, the material opposite of crystal chandelier pendants. The sculpture is more or less self-explanatory, but paired with its title, it’s an outcry of wailing force. And it’s simply too damn big for this new SPACE.

Unfortunately, Bowers’ Memorial dwarfs the rest of “Pace Gems,” curated by former LPF Executive Director Dr. Maura Reilly, who left her post abruptly a little over three weeks before the exhibition’s—and gallery’s—opening night. Reilly’s advance curatorial statement reads, “We have mined the Linda Pace Foundation’s extraordinary collection of contemporary art and have organized the exhibition to demonstrate its breadth, as well as Linda’s vision as a collector [and] to accurately reflect Pace’s overarching collection criteria.”

The “Pace Gems” selections are worth seeing, for sure, and whet the appetite for the forthcoming Linda Pace Foundation Museum, in which her collection will be able to breathe. If you are able to focus beyond the clamoring gems and look at SPACE itself, you’ll find an arena of incredible promise as a project space, a theater for single-installation or for suites of inter-related materials.

As to the breadth of Pace’s collection, “Pace Gems” sure hints at it. The show is larded with marquee names: Hirschhorn, Ligon, Kusama, Serrano, Julien, Hatoum. And it’s all great stuff. I guess it’s meant to be a catalog, a survey, a “best of.” And indeed, the Jim Hodges (Ultimate Joy, 2001) is a completely delightful lit-up mini-masterwork, the Martha Rosler photomontage Nature Girls (Jumping Janes) (1966) sets humor, an energetic formalism and oblique social criticism into outrageous play, and the Wangechi Mutu diptych, Living Through Strange Times (2004), is breathtaking, floral and sexy and earthy and fine.

As for “overarching collection criteria,” though, this particular selection seems bereft of a through-line. It’s just … great stuff. These works as presented feel jumbled and airless. “Pace Gems” wants to show the good stuff without establishing priorities. The individual pieces aren’t in sync or in dialogue, the sight lines are crowded, you’re forever in danger of stepping on something or knocking something over, and you come out admiring, but not illuminated. It’s a confusing paradox of a show.

Recently in Arts & Culture
  • 7 Public Art Projects Worth Searching For You’re likely familiar with the high-profile works of public art on view around downtown San Antonio: the gigantic, red swoop of... | 7/23/2014
  • ‘The Other Side’ Tackles the Impossible: Writing about trauma I didn’t take any notes while reading The Other Side because by the time I paused to pick up a pencil, I was already three-quarters of the way through. And for... | 7/23/2014
  • Free Will Astrology ARIES (March 21-April 19): A report in the prestigious British medical journal BMJ says that almost one percent of young pregnant women in the U.S. claim to be... | 7/23/2014
We welcome user discussion on our site, under the following guidelines:

To comment you must first create a profile and sign-in with a verified DISQUS account or social network ID. Sign up here.

Comments in violation of the rules will be denied, and repeat violators will be banned. Please help police the community by flagging offensive comments for our moderators to review. By posting a comment, you agree to our full terms and conditions. Click here to read terms and conditions.
comments powered by Disqus